Professor James Petras made the comments in an interview with Press TV on Tuesday while commenting on a statement issued by former US Defense Secretary Bill Perry, who told Politico on Wednesday that the cabinet can’t stop a nuclear war if Trump wants one.
Perry said that nuclear war has “become more probable in the last year, partly because of President Trump,” and partly due to events beyond the president’s control.
Professor Petras said, “It is possible that Trump can override his cabinet, but up to now he has vague statements that are very radical but has not implemented them. So there is a gap between what he says he wants to do and what his cabinet is willing to support.”
“Up to now we can say that he has taken some very hostile positions toward Iran, toward the other countries in the Middle East, Syria, but with regard to Russia he has in fact been less belligerent than his cabinet and his opposition,” he stated.
“Likewise in Asia during his visit he made dire threats to North Korea. He has sent the navy and the air force Armada to threaten North Korea, clearly a very belligerent position -- one that follows in the footsteps of Obama and the previous administration,” the analyst explained.
“So I think two things can be said: Hostility has been increased by Trump but so far he hasn’t used any language that would indicate that he is preparing to use nuclear weapons,” he said.
“I think it’s a threat. It’s part of a war of tension, in particularly with regards to North Korea and Iran. I think the strategy in the short run is mainly to put economic sanctions on Iran and North Korea, and that is what he has done up to now,” he noted.
“But I it is not possible that he will escalate, especially if he is feeling that a country is feeling weaknesses, and indicates that he is willing to submit to US dictates. So far, neither North Korea nor Iran indicates that they are intimated by Trump’s virulent language,” Professor Petras concluded.